THE LANGUAGE BARRIER



In an attempt to give her high school Spanish students a real-life illustration of the vocabulary they learned, teacher Holly Alexander of Hoover, Alabama, pulled up Santa Fe on Google Maps, letting them take a virtual tour and point out their recently acquired palabras. The students were impressed with the city’s Pueblo Revival architecture, and enjoyed being whisked through the capital city. As they breezed through virtual alleys and side streets, though, one of the students chimed in: “I’m confused. Why are the signs in English?” We hope the flummoxed pupil paid better attention in their next geography class.



PYRAMID SCHEME



Lieutenant Colonel Stuart McCall is stationed at Fort Meade, Maryland, but has a deep affection for the Land of Enchantment. So each year he makes a point of getting a New Mexico–themed calendar. In searching the web for his 2017 version, he came across one that featured the usual suspects, like White Sands, Carlsbad Caverns, and Jenga-stacked adobe pueblos. Curiously, it also included a photo of a massive pyramid from Mexico (image at right). McCall decided to opt for a more reliable option. “I guess I will continue to only purchase my calendars from your magazine store,” he writes.



BUTTE OF THE JOKE



An eagle-eyed reader at a local outdoors shop sends us a report that might stick in your craw. It seems a batch of stickers promoting the fictional “New Mexico Department of Adventure” included a stylized official seal, with the name of the agency circling around an inspiring desert vista. On paper, it sounds perfect for affixing to the back of a truck or camping canteen. The only problem? “The image is of the West Mitten Butte, part of Monument Valley in Arizona,” our source says. Let us offer some advice: If you’re out adventuring in New Mexico, take a map.



BENDING THE TRUTH



A recent article from Fox News examined the work required in building the proposed border wall with Mexico. Ken Hansen of La Joya was reading all about it when something jumped out. The piece noted that in New Mexico, careful compliance with environmental regulations would be needed in the area of Big Bend National Park. While the National Park Service oversees 15 units in our state, Big Bend is definitely not one of them. The Texas park is lovely but, Hansen says, “I doubt we have room for it.”



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